2l8 MY COUNTRY AND MY PEOPLE concentrate on the storing of information rather than on the development of a critical mind. For a critical mind cannot be easily graded or given a marking of 75 or 93, while a question on the dates of the Punic Wars can. Moreover, any college examination must be of such a nature that students can prepare for it at a week's notice, or all of them will flunk, and any knowledge that can be crammed at a week's notice can be forgotten in as short a period. There have not yet been devised any series of examinations which are cram-proof and student- proof, and the victims are only the professors who are led to believe that their students have really understood their subjects. The old college system, whether in the village school or in the shuyiian (college of higher standard), had a distinct advan- tage over the modern one, for the simple fact that, except for the oflBcial examinations which were entirely optional, it did not rdy on the counting of "units" and "marks." It was a tutorial system, where the teacher knew exactly what his pupils had or had not read, and where there was a very close and intimate relationship between teacher and student. No one was promoted, and no one ever "graduated," and no one studied for a diploma, because there was none. Above all, no one was obliged to mark time and wait for the last lame sheep to jump over the fence. No one was required to read three pages of economics on a Thursday morning and stop at the second paragraph; he could read to the end of the chapter if he wanted, and he had to if he was truly interested. And last of all, no one believed, or tried to make others believe, that by piling up "units" of psychology, religion and salesmanship and English constitutional history on a person, you can create an educated man out of him. No one believed, or tried to make others believe, that you can "test" a man's appreciation of Shakespeare by either a "paraphrase" of any passage or by asking a question on the date of authorship of Othello, or by making him answer questions on Elizabethan idioms. The only thing a college education really does for a man is to instil in him such a permanent distaste for Elizabethan idioms and the De Valorem commentaries that for the remainder of his life he will shun Shakespeare as he shuns poison.